Current Affairs Daily Updates 3rd January 2017

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Current Affairs Daily Updates 3rd January 2017

David R Syiemlieh appointed new UPSC chairman:
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  • President Pranab Mukherjee has appointed Prof David R Syiemliehas the Chairman of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) as per Article 316 of Constitution
  • He will take over from Alka Sirohi and shall remain the head of the organisation till his retirement on January 21, 2018 or till further orders.
  • Prior to this appointment, he was functioning as a UPSC member from June 25, 2012.
Amazon Wins Patent for Flying Warehouse to Deliver Parcels via Drones:
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  • The U.S. e-commerce giant, Amazon has been awarded a patent for launching a giant flying warehouse that would act as a launch pad for drones to deliver items within minutes.
  • The U.S. e-commerce giant described plans for an "airborne fulfilment centre" (AFC) such as an airship or blimp that would float at an altitude of around 45,000. 
  • The airship will be stocked with lots of products
Banks cut base rates: home, corporate loans to be cheaper
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  • Housing, auto and corporate loans are all set to become cheaper with half a dozen PSU and private banks steeply reducing benchmark lending rate by up to 1.48% after spurt in deposits following demonetisation.
  • Taking a cue from State Bank of India, other lenders including largest private sector lender ICICI Bank and state-owned Oriental Bank of Commerce and Andhra Bank announced a cut in the marginal cost of funds based lending rate (MCLR).
  • SBI along with PNB and Union Bank of India, yesterday reduced the lending rate by a good 0.9% after Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his new year eve address urged the banks to focus on the needs of poor and lower middle class and middle class.
Karnataka Minister H S Mahadeva Prasad dies at 58
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  • Karnataka minister for co-operation and sugar H S Mahadeva Prasad passed away in Bangalore due to cardiac arrest. He was 58 years old.
  • An active Congressman and five term member of Karnataka Legislative Assembly representing Gundlupet assembly constituency, prasad was also the In Charge Minister of Chamarajanagar District. 
Pakistan approves Hindu marriage bill:
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  • The Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights unanimously approved the Hindu Marriages Bill on 2nd January 2017.
  • The much-awaited bill to regulate marriages of minority Hindus in Pakistan moved closer to reality after a Senate committee approved the landmark draft legislation, nearly four months after it was passed by the National Assembly.
  • The bill will enable the Hindu community members to get their marriages registered. 
India 3rd among nations offering highest salaries to expats:
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  • India has ranked third among the countries offering the highest average annual salary to expatriates, according to HSBC Holdings data. 
  • Switzerland offers an average salary of $188,275 a year to expats, the highest in the world and almost twice the global average. 
  • Further, the best employment packages, including health benefits, are found in Middle East countries like Bahrain.
India, Sri Lanka agree to exchange views to find permanent solution to fishermen issues:
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  • India and Sri Lanka have expressed confidence for finding a long-lasting solution to the issue of fishermen between the two countries. 
  • In this regard, talks co-chaired by Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh and Sri Lankan fisheries Minister Mahinda Amaraweera were held in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
Nepal hosts Elephant Festival in Chitwan:
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  • Nepal recently celebrated the 13th Chitwan Elephant Festival toboost tourism
  • The 5-day event showcases elephant walk, elephant polo, elephant calf football, elephant beauty contest, elephant picnic, and elephant painting. 
  • The festival was attended about 20,000 domestic and foreign tourists.
British govt to launch new one-pound coin at end of March:
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  • The British government has announced that it would launch a new one-pound coin at the end of March this year and scrap the current one pound coin by October.
  • The new 12-sided one pound coin would become legal tender on 28th March and the new coin would be produced by the Royal Mint in Wales.
  • A total of 1.5 billion of the coins will be issued in the first minting.
PM inaugurate Indian Science Congress at Tirupati:
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  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated the five-day annualIndian Science Congress at the Sri Venkateswara University in Tirupati.
  • ‘Science and Technology for National Development’ would be the focal theme of the Indian Science Congress, Prof D Narayana Rao, General President of Indian Science Congress Association (ISCA). 
Andhra Pradesh Government launches NTR Arogya Raksha Scheme:
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  • Andhra Pradesh Government has launched NTR Arogya Raksha Scheme to provide the medical treatment to the people below Above Poverty Line (APL) at Rs. 1200 premium per annum
  • The new health scheme offering medical insurance to those who were not covered under any of the existing health schemes of the state government. 
  • NTR Arogya Raksha Scheme covers 1044 diseases and offers up to `2 lakh and free treatment. One can register for the scheme at any of the Mee Seva centres till February 2017.
Birth Anniversary of Savitribai Phule: 3 January
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  • Hailed as the country's first woman teacher, Savitribai Phulewas also a social worker and a poet. Born on January 3, 1831, in Maharashtra's Naigaon. 
  • 2017 marks her 186th birth year. Savitribai Phule is credited with laying the foundation of education opportunities for women in India and played a major role in improving women's rights in the country during the British Raj. 
  • Many of her poems were against discrimination and spoke about the need to get educated. She campaigned against untouchability, Sati tradition, child marriage and other social evils most of her life.
Bengaluru to host 'Pravasi Bharatiya Divas' from January 7:
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  • The annual overseas Indians' gathering  "Pravasi Bharatiya Divas" will be held from January 7-9 in Bengaluru
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the 14th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) on January 8. 
  • The Announcement was made by the Ministry of External Affairs on Monday.
Maharashtra Government Bans use of Purse Seine Nets for Fishing:
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  • Maharashtra Government has declared to ban the use of Purse Seine Nets for fishing across Maharashtra from January 1, 2017 to safeguard the Fingerlings, a fish species
  • The move is aimed at curbing the exploitation of fish by safeguarding the fingerlings and its eggs to increase their population.
Russia delivers Sukhoi jets to China
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  • Russia has finally delivered four Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets to China after a delay of two years.
  • The Su-35 is an advanced version of the Su-30s operated by the Indian Air Force.
Table tennis Olympic champion Li Xiaoxia announces retirement
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  • China's table tennis Olympic champion Li Xiaoxia has announced her retirement.
  • She is the eighth table tennis Grand Slam winner in history with singles crowns from the 2008 World Cup in Kuala Lumpur, 2012 Olympics in London and 2013 world championships in Paris.
  • She also has several doubles and teams world titles to her name.